Sunday, August 01, 2010

Frugal and Focused Tweeting

Interview with Carolyn Howard-Johnson and a short review of her latest book!
Frugal and Focused Tweeting for Retailers: Tweaking Your Tweets and Other Tips for Integrating Your Social Media by Carolyn Howard-Johnson
Paperback: 130 pages
ISBN-13: 978-1451546149
Available - NOW!

You may be thinking - I don't have a retail business. But if you are a business owner, and that includes author or service provider, this book is for you!
I began reading this book a couple weeks ago. First thing I noticed was the ease at which I could slip into the book and jump to a specific chapter if I wanted to know about one certain aspect. It also provides little things we can do to tweak our Twitter accounts and Tweets that we might not have considered otherwise. And it's those little things that make the difference on Twitter!

Carolyn was also nice enough to answer a few questions:
1 - What's the biggest mistake new Tweeters make?
Diane, of course we're talking about Tweeters who have an agenda other than connecting with old friends. Tweeters who are marketing. Tweeters who are branding themselves. Tweeters who have some product or service to sell. And that includes writers. The biggest mistake they make is giving up before they get started, explore the network a bit and learn how to use it effectively. Mind you, this doesn't have to be done all at once. But I tell my clients, don't give up until you've realized (actually seen!) benefits. And you will! Mind you these benefits might be sales ($$$$), but there are many others. I list them in Frugal and Focused Tweeting (

2- What extras (Tweetdeck, etc.) do you recommend?

I use Tweetdeck. Also use Social Ooomph avidly to do tasks that Tweetdeck doesn't do and some that it does. But my approach is that Tweeters don't need dozens of these apps. The idea is to keep Tweeting simple. Frugal of money but also frugal of time. So I give people a list in the Appendix of Frugal and Focused Tweeting of the essential tried and true applications they need to do a great job, urge them to try them one at a time, tell them not to duplicate efforts. I mean there are some 70,000 apps out there for Twitter. Why not use what others have found work well--especially "others" like me who just want something that works well and costs little or nothing. There is no point in trying and using everything that comes along. That just confuses things. I think my Appendix list covers one app for every essential process a Tweeter will eventually need.

3 - Is it ever too late to salvage a sagging Twitter or organize a large one?

Oh, no! Isn't it wonderful. That's a principle of marketing. It is never too early to start, but also never too late. Same for rejuvenating an old effort. Do remember, though, that even promotions don't work unless they're promoted well. And, luckily, that's the power of the Internet. It lets us cross promote (cross pollinate if you will!) so well. That means when we Tweet well, we can let it work for us on our blogs and Web site and every other social network we play with. And they can contribute to our Twitter account. Now, multiply that exponentially by networking with other Tweeters and bloggers. Really! It's magic!

By the way, see how I just my retail Twitter account on my blog. It keeps the page fresh and new, even when I haven't blogged for a while - Frugal Retailing Recent Tweets are fed (meaning no work on my part!) to the right column every time I Tweet!

Carolyn Howard-Johnson's web site: How to do it Frugally

If you have any questions for Carolyn, please leave a comment!


The Old Silly said...

Wow - HoJo just keeps coming up with more great "how to" books! Love this one, gotta get me a copy. Thanks, Diane, for posting this, and Carolyn, you KNOW how much I appreciate all that you do to help authors along our way. :)


Thanks Diane for inviting Carolyn, it was an awesome interview. Most interesting.


TerryLynnJohnson said...

facinating stuff! Thanks so much for posting this helpful advice!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

I'm new on Twitter and still trying to figure out who to follow besides bloggers I know.

Unknown said...

I'm trying but I don't know that I have twitter totally figured out yet. This is some great advice. Thanks for the review and interview.


Jemi Fraser said...

Really interesting stuff - thanks so much :)

Patricia Stoltey said...

I think I need that book. Thanks Diane and Carolyn.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing Carolyn's website in your blog post. I went and checked it out. Great stuff!

Karen Jones Gowen said...

A whole book on how to twitter? That's amazing. I'll check out her website for tips but I think I'm a hopeless cause. Twitter gives me a massive headache.

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I tweet Carolyn's posts regularly. :) Great advice here. I like using SocialOomph, too, which is one of the apps Carolyn mentions.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Thanks for the great interview.

Still, I am begging off Twitter right now. I already have too many demands on my limited time.

Twitter just seems too much time-investment for too little return.

I am old-fashioned though. Have a great week, Roland

Carolyn Howard-Johnson said...

Oh, dear! I hope some of you great commenters come back to see my answers.

Roland, Twitter is one of the few efforts I've made in almost ten years of promoting my books where I actually see sales linked to my efforts. I don't advocate tallying sales as if it's the only marker of success. But it's still nice to see that now and then. So I'm not sure about that "too little return." Plus the networking benefits are huge.

My dear old Silly. Thank you. You know how I appreciate you!

Elizabeth, you are already good at making Twitter work for you. It's in those retweets you do, girl! (-:

Karen, that's exactly what this book does (I hope!!!!). It makes sense of Twitter so it doesn't give you even the weeniest headache.

Alex, there are soooo many ways to get folks to follow you. Frugal and Focused Tweeting will give you the simplest, most effective way. But here's one big tip: Let Social Ooomph search keywords for you. That will help you find people interested in the topics you write about.

All the rest, just many thanks for coming by. And big, huge hugs to Diane for featuring me today at the beginning of my online launch of Frugal and Focused Tweeting.


Helen Ginger said...

I use Tweetdeck, but am not familiar with Social Ooomph. I'll look into it. For a while I was tweeting often. Lately, I'm barely doing two tweets a day.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Thanks for visiting, Carolyn!

Peggy Frezon said...

Great points. I love Twitter too, it's quick and easy to connect. I've made several contacts that have turned into interviews and then published stories. My best tip is to tweet a couple times a day and to tweet something helpful to others.

Hart Johnson said...

Thank you for hosting this! I am a Twittering Twit, and hadn't really thought I had the energy to 'figure it out' but it sounds an awful lot like all I need to do is check out some OTHER people who have already put in the time and energy.

Unknown said...

I'm new to Twitter. What makes me wonder is what kind of an audience to build. I have never looked into any of the apps. I'm just going to go explore Twitter.
Thanks for these great tips Carolyn. Nice post Diane.

Arlee Bird said...

Well, maybe someday. If I keep reading posts like this it might eventually nudge me into checking out Twitter.

Tossing It Out

Jane Kennedy Sutton said...

I already own one of Carolyn’s excellent books – it sounds as if I need to increase my collection to two or more! This one sounds really useful as I'm on Twitter but have no idea what I'm doing there!)